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Radical

Review

Radical

RADICAL, E.M Kokie’s fourth teen novel, explores the life of Bex and the challenges she has to face to find where she fits in. Bex is not considered to be a ‘traditional’ teenage girl --- much to her mother’s dismay. She is intrigued by guns and surviving without electricity and running water because, in her mind, she must be prepared for anything. When both her father and her brother start to devote their time to a growing organization designed to prep people to “go off grid,"  Bex is astonished and relieved that her family is finally listening to what she had been trying to tell them--- until her brother inexplicably began to act ferocious toward to government and anyone who stood in his way, putting his entire family in law enforcement’s focus.

"E.M Kokie has crafted an extraordinary novel that captures the truth of finding your identity in the teenage years. RADICAL is an all-encompassing story, touching on same-sex love, family pressures and other average teen problems."

In the midst of the chaos of her life, Bex finds people with the same interests as her. The girls who spent their free time at the new organization feel the same way Bex does about preparation for anything, so they all bond quite quickly with each other. While she is working at her uncle’s gas station one day, Bex meets Lucy. Within days of meeting, they fall for each other. They are together every chance they get, but when Bex attempts to introduce her interests to Lucy, she receives an unexpected response.

E.M Kokie has crafted an extraordinary novel that captures the truth of finding your identity in the teenage years. RADICAL is an all-encompassing story, touching on same-sex love, family pressures and other average teen problems between its two covers. The narration of this book is so diverse from any other books I’ve read simply because the character was so well-developed. Not only is Bex a strong female lead in the book, she is a lover of guns and she’s gay --- a combination rarely acknowledged in society.  RADICAL is a thriller in a different sense than what you may expect. Instead of anxiously waiting for a huge, completely devastating event to take place, I found myself waiting for the little things to happen.

The only (minor) drawback of this book is that while Bex is such a well-developed character, I found some of the characters to be lacking in detail. For example, Lucy was not described much. Though she was a minor character, she was Bex’s girlfriend and was mentioned in multiple chapters, yet as a reader, I didn’t know enough about her to feel connected to her in any way.

RADICAL is a phenomenal book that most will find themselves enjoying. This book will have something for everyone, whether they are looking for a romance, a thriller or just a general fiction. Fans of shows similar to “Doomsday Preppers” will particularly enjoy this read.

Reviewed by Mikenzie Reed on October 13, 2016

Radical
by E. M. Kokie